Dispatches from the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East (Paperback)
The Arab Spring unleashed forces of liberation and social justice that swept across North Africa and the Middle East with unprecedented speed, ferocity, and excitement. Although the future of the democratic uprisings against oppressive authoritarian regimes remains uncertain in many places, the revolutionary wave that started in Tunisia in December 2010 has transformed how the world sees Arab peoples and politics. Bringing together the knowledge of activists, scholars, journalists, and policy experts uniquely attuned to the pulse of the region, Dispatches from the Arab Spring offers an urgent and engaged analysis of a remarkable ongoing world-historical event that is widely misinterpreted in the West.
Tracing the flows of protest, resistance, and counterrevolution in every one of the countries affected by this epochal change—from Morocco to Iraq and Syria to Sudan—the contributors provide ground-level reports and new ways of teaching about and understanding the Middle East in general, and contextualizing the social upheavals and political transitions that defined the Arab Spring in particular. Rejecting outdated and invalid (yet highly influential) paradigms to analyze the region—from depictions of the “Arab street” as a mindless, reactive mob to the belief that Arab culture was “unfit” for democratic politics—this book offers fresh insights into the region’s dynamics, drawing from social history, political geography, cultural creativity, and global power politics. Dispatches from the Arab Spring is an unparalleled introduction to the changing Middle East and offers the most comprehensive and accurate account to date of the uprisings that profoundly reshaped North Africa and the Middle East.
Contributors: Sheila Carapico, U of Richmond; Nouri Gana, UCLA; Toufic Haddad; Adam Hanieh, SOAS/U of London; Toby C. Jones, Rutgers U; Anjali Kamat; Khalid Medani, McGill U; Merouan Mekouar; Maya Mikdashi, NYU; Paulo Gabriel Hilu Pinto, U Federal Fluminense, Brazil; Jillian Schwedler, Hunter College, CUNY; Ahmad Shokr; Susan Slyomovics, UCLA; Haifa Zangana.
About the Author
Paul Amar is associate professor in the Global and International Studies Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He specializes in comparative politics, international security studies, political sociology, global ethnography, theories of the state, and theories of gender, race, and postcolonial politics. He focuses on democratic transitions in the Middle East and Latin America, and traces the origins and intersections of new patterns of police militarization, security governance, humanitarian intervention, and state restructuring in the megacities of the Global South. He has been interviewed regularly on radio and television and has contributed to Jadaliyya e-zine, Al Jazeera Online, Courrier International,Cairo Times,Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and a dozen other international news publications in seven languages. His books include The Security Archipelago: Human-Security States, Sexuality Politics, and the End of Neoliberalism; Cairo Cosmopolitan: Politics, Culture, and Urban Space in the New Globalized Middle East (edited with Diane Singerman); New Racial Missions of Policing: International Perspectives on Evolving Law-Enforcement Politics; Global South to the Rescue: Emerging Humanitarian Superpowers and Globalizing Rescue Industries; and The Middle East and Brazil.
Vijay Prashad is Edward Said Chair at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. His books include Arab Spring, Libyan Winter; The Darker Nations: A People's History of the Third World; and The Karma of Brown Folk (Minnesota, 2000).
In their Dispatches from the Arab Spring, Paul Amar and Vijay Prashad have brought together some groundbreaking writings on the unfolding Arab revolutions. The common feature of this set of exquisite reflections is their critical intimacies with the fact and phenomena of the Arab Spring and an abiding commitment to its success and promises. The result is the rare feat of a sober and uplifting read at one and the same time.—Hamid Dabashi, Columbia University
"The book offers an excellent starting point for further exploration of the tangled trajectories of change that will, ultimately, define the political and economic reordering of the region."—H-Net Reviews
"Lucid, comprehensive, and well-written."—CHOICE
"An informative context and accessibly written historical background to the unrest in differing countries."—Political Studies Review